In the News from Panama

EU Picks Panama for Regional HQ

The European Parliament has Panama City as the location for its new regional office for Latin America and the Caribbean.

The “Hub of the Americas” was a natural choice, considering Panama City’s central role in regional commerce and trade. Panama is already well-established as the link between the EU and the region. The capital is the home of the Parlatino, a body made up of the national parliaments of the region, and the capital has hosted meetings of the Euro-Latin American Parliamentary Assembly on numerous occasions.

The EU sees Latin America as an important partner; the EU has association, trade or political and cooperation agreements with 27 of the 33 LAC countries, “making it the region with the closest institutional ties to the EU,” the press office said. The new headquarters in Panama will help promote regional ties and provide support to “Parliament’s political bodies visiting the region,” the press office said.

The EU has only opened a handful of offices in different parts of the world, including outposts in Jakarta, Addis Ababa, and New York. 

Spanish MEP Iratxe García praised the move to open a Panama office as “good news,” saying it should be used to promote parliamentary ties between Latin America and the European Union, according to coverage in Politico. “I always said it was very important for Europe to look to Latin America as a region where we have major opportunities to tighten cooperation,” the MEP said.